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Hiring Office: UNFPA Lebanon Country Office

Purpose of consultancy: The overall objective of the assignment is to provide both an overall analysis of cyber violence, cyberbullying, and online harassment of women and girls in Lebanon and a policy paper that can guide governmental and nongovernmental entities’ interventions related to cyber GBV. Although the digital space can be useful for creating safe spaces for marginalized groups, online privacy violations are rampant, and can sometimes lead to physical threats. Inequality between men and women is present in the online sphere, with issues such as the non-consensual sharing of intimate images and harassment disproportionately affecting women. Technology-facilitated GBV occurs worldwide and comprises a spectrum of behaviours, including stalking, bullying, sexual harassment, defamation, hate speech and exploitation. Throughout the pandemic and the multi-layered socioeconomic crisis that Lebanon is going through, evidence showed an increase in GBV incidence in 2020 and 2021. Nevertheless, although we have anecdotal evidence that cyber GBV is increasing, we have a gap in literature in this regard. Data received from the Internal Security Forces provided to local NGO FeMale with the following numbers of the reported cases on cyber-crimes against women and girls only:

– 1123 reported cases in 2018

– 1270 reported cases in 2019

– 315 reported cases until the end of March 2020

– Numbers indicated that women and girls of all age ranges are prone to be victims of cyber-crimes, where the age ranges that reported online violence were 12 to 55 years old.

– The percentage of cyber-crimes committed against girls, age 12 to 26, was 41%, while those 26 and above reached 27%. According to the Lebanese Internal Security Forces, during the national lockdown period alone, the percentage of general reported cases of cybercrimes amplified by 184%:

– 122 complaints between February 21, 2020, and April 21, 2020.

– 43 complaints between December 20, 2019, and February 20, 2019.

This assignment will provide a situation analysis of cyber GBV in Lebanon considering the overall increase of GBV during the last two years through a survey and KIIs. Additionally, this assignment will take into consideration cyber GBV in light of the new sexual harassment law (Law 205) and how is it affecting women and girls’ safety online and offline.